Nagarkoti, Mawi the future stars

W.V. Raman

W.V. Raman

India can invest in Kamlesh Nagarkoti and Shivam Mawi, two promising fast bowlers who made a huge impression on stand-in coach W.V. Raman on the recent Youth (under-19) tour to England.

Raman, back after India made a clean sweep of the two Tests at Chesterfield and Worcester apart from winning all the five ODIs, was profuse in his analysis of the team but made a special mention of Nagarkoti and Mawi.

Having faced some of the finest fast bowlers in his time — Courtney Walsh, Patrick Patterson, Curtly Ambrose, Ian Bishop, Allan Donald — Raman should know the potential of Nagarkoti and Mawi. “Both can put in lot of pace and extract bounce,” he noted.

The wiry Nagarkoti, in Raman’s opinion, was, “a fantastic athlete with the right aggression,” while Mawi had the, “pace and skill to impress. They both have the right attitude and if handled properly I am sure we will hear a lot about them in the future.”

The team, emphasised Raman, “enjoyed the challenges in England. They played some fabulous cricket. In tight situations, somebody or other would chip in. To me this was the highlight of the tour. The team always had someone to shoulder the responsibility.”

According to Raman, “the tour provided a fantastic platform for the youngsters to showcase their skills. The experience and exposure they gained in alien conditions will help them grow. The primary objective of such tours is to fast track their development.”

Among the batsmen, Raman observed Prithvi Shaw was the one to watch. “He strikes the ball very well and scores runs at a quick pace. He can be like a Viru (Sehwag), fearless batsman who plays his strokes and looks to dominate. He must learn to prolong his stay but I wouldn’t like Prithvi to curb his shots.”

Punjab batsman Shubman Gill, with a century each in Test and ODI, came in for praise too. “He is majestic to watch. He packs lot of punch in his shots. Someday he and Prithvi will be knocking the doors of the senior team.”

Raman welcomed the idea of more such tours. “On such tours, you learn to adapt and develop. It is always good to play unknown oppositions. It helps because when they graduate to the first-class level they learn to handle the challenges professionally. Thanks to the BCCI, these boys get to play lot of cricket and receive the best of facilities too,” said Raman.

The former India opener, with a wealth of coaching experience that began with the 2008 tour to South Africa with Virat Kohli leading the India under-19 squad, summed up the current team. “Our youngsters are way ahead of the rest. They are groomed in ideal infrastructure to pursue their cricket. They also improve by playing together more frequently. They look more cooked as a unit than the rest and hence handle pressure far better. It is an excellent bunch,” said Raman, who hands the baton back to Rahul Dravid.

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2022 6:42:31 pm |